I have a simple 3 motor robot arm. Without much experience or knowledge, I put together a circuit for controlling it. Circuit is below:
Now the circuit actually works and I can program the Arduino and have it move about as I wish. Here are the issues and questions I have:
I have had several motor drive boards "smoke" and then never turn on again. Is this because the motors may have been stalled when I powered on the circuit? I.e. if my motors have a stall current of 20A, do I need a motor driver that can handle 20A? The reason I went with less (13A drivers) is because I was only planning on operating around 10A, which would be the max power operating point. Do I even have control of how much current is drawn?
Is it advisable to use 1 battery like I am doing? I had to strip the other end of the aligator clips, strip the 3 sets of wires, wrap em around, and apply a lot of solder. I have no idea what the "reasonable" thing to do here is, maybe it's to have 3 batteries for all I know.
I am using AWG wire #16, which is supposed to have a max chassis wiring limit of 22A (http://www.powerstream.com/Wire_Size.htm). Should this be alright? I haven't had any wire melting problems.
Any other suggestions are welcome, I am new to this =)
Thanks for the help, and let me know if you need any additional information.